Incumbent Republican Del. John A. Rollison III was listed yesterday as the official winner in his race against Democratic challenger George G. Dowd for Virginia's 52nd legislative district, in Prince William County.
According to county Registrar Nancy Lawson, official results show Rollison winning by 119 votes, or 50.7 percent of the 9,149 votes cast. Initial figures had shown Rollison to be the winner by 49 votes. When the two men ran against each other in 1985, Rollison won by 118 votes.
"I'm glad the whole thing is over with," said Rollison. "It was certainly very unusual."
"I certainly congratulate Jack," Dowd said yesterday. "I hope he'll go back to Richmond and do a better job," he added.
There was some doubt late last week about who had won the close race because of illegible printouts from voting machines in several precincts, a glitch that occurred elsewhere in Virginia as well.
According to Lawson, problems with the voting machine printouts became obvious election night when officials in 12 precincts called for help reading the results, which had been printed on top of the candidates' names. Machines were unlocked and results taken directly from vote meters. Problems in three other precincts came to light later in the week, and the elections board convened to open those machines Friday and Saturday. Rollison picked up 70 votes in the process.
Elsewhere in Virginia election officials had similar problems. "We supplied 700 printer packs throughout the state," said Spooner Hull, president of Virginia Election Services, a Richmond firm that sells and services voting systems in more than half of Virginia's localities. "There were problems with one-third of them."